Cannon Air Force Base UFO Incident
Date: January 21, 1976
Location: Near Clovis, NM
Bruce, who works for a major media outlet, witnessed the objects, and the jet aircraft that persued them, and who was fortunate to capture one of these objects on film.
Bruce around the time the incident took place was working in the news department at Channel 3, the PBS station in Portales, New Mexico. In addition to working at the PBS station he held a couple of part time jobs with two of the local radio stations as well. At that time money was an issue due to him being a college student. Working at the different media outlets it was giving him the experience he needed for his upcoming career in Journalism. One of the overnight jobs Bruce had was in Clovis, New Mexico at KMTY FM 99.1 which was at that time one of the 100,000 watt radio stations in the country.
On January 21, 1976 Bruce received a call from the radio station manager to see if he would mind working as the station was going to do some performance checks on the transmitter. Bruce would stay out at a remote location where some of the station's equipment was located. This is how Bruce ended up at the right time, and the right place, to see the events that were about to unfold in front of him. Bruce was also a storm spotter for West Texas and Eastern New Mexico. Bruce was given a small kit which held a pair of binoculars, a note pad and a bunch of telephone numbers that he could call if a storm was spotted coming through the area.
He had spent alot of time at Cannon AFB as he was in the civil air patrol. At that time his senior flight instructor had given him his primary flight lessons. Being on the base, and not in the military, Bruce had become friends with a lot of the base personnel. Since he worked at one of the local radio stations he would play requests that were called in from the base security and night maintenance. He got to know them all very well.
Bruce mentioned that Cannon was located between the University of Portales and Clovis and it was common to see the F-111's and Aardvarks taking off from the base with full afterburners carrying out nighttime flight operations.
He arrived and was sitting in his truck at the location of the transmitter. While waiting for the phone to ring in the transmitter shack he noticed a number of pin point lights popping up in the sky which appeared to look like light bulbs on a string. Two of them dropped downward until they reached a lower altitude, stopped and hovered. The lights were seen between his location and Cannon AFB at this time.
While watching these strange objects Bruce grabbed the pair of binoculars he had with him. He describes the two lower lights as the classic saucer shaped craft and they had a bluish glow to them with a red radiant glow on the bottom side of the craft. A small dome shape could easily be seen at the top of each of the two objects. In his estimation he believes the objects may have been at least 30' to 50' in diameter. The two objects were hovering parallel to one another and then started to move off at a slow rate of speed in perfect formation heading towards the base. Bruce said he followed them with his binoculars for approximately 15 minutes.
The objects flew past a number of buildings which were at the edge of the base, then they proceeded to climb in altitude as to where they again looked like a small light in the clear night sky. Bruce said it looked as if the lights on, and in, the buildings were dimming due to the objects being in close proximity. Later after talking to base personnel, this proved to be true, the lights had dimmed, and the objects were noticed by the base personnel.
Bruce usually carried a small camera with him but on this day he had not brought it with him. He called the station as he was excited to talk about what he had just witnessed. Some of the other people at the station had also been watching the events unfold that night. Through Channel 3s connections they heard that the objects were widely seen by many that night and by the state police. An article was written on the objects seen that January.
The next evening Bruce had gathered together a few people from the newsroom. Since Bruce was staying in a dorm on campus he knew a good number of folks on campus. He was able to get the keys for the door to the roof so Bruce and his friends could sit up on top of the building's roof to watch the skies just in case something should return. Although a cool night the group stood watching. This time Bruce did bring the camera.
At approximately 12:45 a.m. four objects dropped down from the night sky and started darting around. This is where Bruce was finally able to capture an image of one of the crafts on black and white film. As the people observed the objects, the base had scrambled the F-111's jet fighters out of Cannon.
The jet aircraft began trying to intercept the objects. As the aircraft got close to the vicinity of the unknown objects, the objects, at an incredible rate of speed, would shoot across the sky making 90° turns leaving the fighter aircraft trailing way behind as they just weren't able to keep up with the strange craft. As the objects made unusual turns a plasma type glow could clearly be witnessed by the group of people watching the event. The cat and mouse chase between the objects and jets went on for approximately 45 minutes. Because the witnesses were on one of the tallest buildings in Portales, they could clearly see the flight line at the Base. One of the men had brought a 150 power telescope which enabled the group to see the objects fly at a low altitude over the flight line. As the objects passed over the lights running down the flight line, all the lights went out.
Eventually the objects shot up and were gone in a second, or so, and the F-111's were recalled back to the Base and landed safely.
Bruce mentioned that a couple days after the second night sighting of the objects a couple of the Base security personnel had called and explained how the lights went out over the entire base. Of course, Bruce was asking a lot of questions at this point. The security officer from the Base told him that everyone at the Cannon was freaking out as they did not know what these objects were. Also the security officer said that the Cannon base was bringing in new light towers from a SAC base in North Dakota to place on the flight line.
The security officer told him to keep an eye on the base as it would be really lit up after the new lighting was installed. A few days later the AFB was lit up brightly. Bruce talked to another military man from the base who said that the base had radar tape of the objects from both nights but certainly did not want Bruce to mention where the information came from.
Because there were others who were there who witnessed the events that took place over the Cannon, an attempt will be made to to contact these witnesses to gather their reports on the event. One other important bit of information to this case is that there is a Freedom Of Information Act document to say that jet aircraft were scrambled out of the Cannon that evening in 1976. Although there has been no explanation as to why, this still gives a valuable clue that something very unusual took place that night.
Update: After Bruce went public with his story on a radio program, he and his family were threatened.
Bruce said on July 20, 2004, after he appeared on the program on Friday, July 16, 2004, when he told what he saw over Cannon back in January 21, 1976. Bruce mentioned on the air that he had taken a black and white photograph of one of the objects that had been observed out maneuvering the jet aircraft which were scrambled from the Cannon. On July 20, 2004 at approximately 1:30 a.m. Bruce had a disturbing telephone call from an unknown person and the report on this is below.
Bruce wanted to point out to me that he carries two cell phones with him at all times. One is for business, etc.. and the other is for personal business to keep in contact with family and close friends. He stated that no one had his private cell number as it was not listed and the only people that had this number were his wife, children, and some close friends. His children are grown up and now living on their own. He kept his cell phones on the night table. His work phone turned off, but the private phone turned on, just in case one of his children might need to contact him in case of an emergency.
As mentioned above, it was around 1:30 a.m., Bruce and his wife had turned in for the night and were sound asleep when his cell phone started ringing. Knowing that he had his work cell phone turned off he knew it was a call from one of his children, and of course being a parent, he worried as he grabbed for the phone. Bruce answered with a hello and a voice spoke back saying:
Mr. Bruce XXXXXX. Bruce said there was a very professional sounding gentleman on the other end. The man said he needed to talk to him about a matter of utmost urgency. Bruce still half asleep asked the man who he was, what was this call was all about, especially at this hour of the morning. The fellow said this is about your recent radio appearance and discussion about some photographs that you took back in New Mexico.
At this point in the conversation Bruce said to the man: You have to be kidding me. Thinking this had to be some kind of hoax, asked who was this. The man said there is no need for you to know who I am. He went on to say:
It would be in your best interest to discontinue this line of discussion and do away with those photographs. Destroy them.
Bruce at this point is in shock about this man. He looks on the cell phone to see what phone number is displayed and it shows number not available. The man told Bruce that this is no joke and we feel that this would be in your best interest, and for the sake of your family, that all of this go away.
Bruce told the man that if he wasn't willing to reveal himself then the conversation would be terminated. The man then went on to tell Bruce what his children were involved in, meaning their daily activities, where they lived, etc.., what Bruce's wife was doing, such as personal activities within the family, etc... and said that he could fax Bruce his life's history within a few seconds. That was it, Bruce hung up and that ended the call with the stranger.
After this incident took place and some weeks had gone by, a neighbor of Bruce's caught up with him outside one day and told him that they had been seeing alot of traffic in and out of Bruce's property. Cars would pull up and stay for a while and then drive off. Other times the cars would pull into the driveway, stop, and men would get out and walk around the home. Then they got back into their cars and drove off. These cars that were coming and going had government license plates on them.
One other interesting fact to this story is that Bruce put together a package some UFOlogists. In this package there was a copy of the photo he had taken over the AFB. Bruce mailed out the packages all and not one of them has been received the information. Bruce says he is going to try again and send it through a different means. I hope once I receive the material I can update this story.